Government IT is unique from enterprise IT in many varied and distinct ways, however, one that transcends both the public and private sectors is the need to balance money in with money out. When looking towards a future with more cyber-insecurity, agencies and governments must understand that prioritizing every dollar spent on cybersecurity needs to produce the highest return on investment possible.
Faced with the ever-growing threat of ransomware, DDoS, and ever-present phishing attacks, government IT is being challenged but there are ways to counter these threats. Cloud-based government IT can be made more secure through a variety of means, from adopting a zero trust approach, to having secure backup storage solutions. However, which is more of a priority? How can agencies be sure they are truly getting the highest return on investment?
In a recent blog post, David Puzas, Senior Product Marketing Manager for Cloud Security at CrowdStrike, detailed how cloud-based government IT can be best protected and how to ensure that the cybersecurity budget is being invested in the most efficient way. As Puzas puts it, the path to truly efficient cybersecurity is often a bit difficult to find, but when partnered with the right cybersecurity professionals the journey becomes that much easier for cloud-based government IT.
Where to Start
To address these challenges head on, organizations are turning to cloud workload protection platforms. But how do IT and business leaders know which boxes these solutions should check? Which solution is best in addressing cloud security threats based on the changing adversary landscape?
To help guide the decision-making process, CrowdStrike has prepared a buyer’s guide with advice on choosing the right solution for your organization. In this guide, we discuss different aspects of these solutions that customers should consider in the buying process, including detection, prevention and CI/CD integration. Here are four key evaluation points highlighted in the buyer’s guide:
- Cloud Protection as an Extension of Endpoint Security
Focusing on endpoint security alone is not sufficient to secure the hybrid environments many organizations now have to protect. For those organizations, choosing the right cloud workload protection platform is vital.
- Understanding Adversary Actions Against Your Cloud Workloads
Real-time, up-to-date threat intelligence is a critical consideration when evaluating CWP platforms. As adversaries ramp up actions to exploit cloud services, having the latest information about attacker tactics and applying it successfully is a necessary part of breach prevention. For example, CrowdStrike researchers noted seeing adversaries targeting neglected cloud infrastructure slated for retirement that still contains sensitive data as well as adversaries leveraging common cloud services as a way to obfuscate malicious activity (learn more in our CrowdStrike cloud security eBook, Adversaries Have Their Heads In the Cloud and Are Targeting Your Weak Points). A proper approach to securing cloud resources leverages enriched threat intelligence to deliver a visual representation of relationships across account roles, workloads and APIs to provide deeper context for a faster, more effective response.
- Complete Visibility into Misconfigurations, Vulnerabilities and More
Closing the door on attackers also involves identifying the vulnerabilities and misconfigurations they’re most likely to exploit. A strong approach to cloud security will weave these capabilities into the CI/CD pipeline, enabling organizations to catch vulnerabilities early. For example, they can create verified image policies to guarantee that only approved images are allowed to pass through the pipeline. By continuously scanning container images for known vulnerabilities and configuration issues and integrating security with developer toolchains, organizations can accelerate application delivery and empower DevOps teams. Catching vulnerabilities is also the job of cloud security posture management technology. These solutions allow organizations to continuously monitor the compliance of all their cloud resources. This ability is critical because misconfigurations are at the heart of many data leaks and breaches. Having these solutions bolstering your cloud security strategy will enable you to reduce risk and embrace the cloud with more confidence.
- Managed Threat Hunting: Technology alone is not enough
As adversaries refine their tradecraft to avoid detection, access to MDR and advanced threat hunting services for the cloud can be the difference in stopping a breach. Managed services should be able to leverage up-to-the-minute threat intelligence to search for stealthy and sophisticated attacks. This human touch adds a team of experts that can augment existing security capabilities and improve customers’ ability to detect and respond to threats.
Making the Right Decision
Weighing the differences between security vendors is not always simple. However, there are some must-haves for cloud security solutions. From detection to prevention to integration with DevOps tools, organizations need to adopt the capabilities that put them in the best position to take advantage of cloud computing as securely as possible.
To learn more, download the CrowdStrike Cloud Workload Protection Platform Buyers Guide